Wednesday, September 10, 2008

9/11/01.. then GWOT?

We're on the eve of another 9/11 anniversary, the heartsickness of which beggers description for most people. The thing about memorials, though, is that they're supposed to make us feel as though we've learned to be better people by coming to a full understanding of a past tragedy. The problem with this anniversary in my mind is that although people do feel pain and sadness, our government continues to prosecute unjust wars against the people of Afganistan and Iraq. Thus the tragedy grows ever larger.

A quiet but knowledgeable opponent of the war against Iraq, General William Odom was buried at Arlington earlier this week. Among the many times he was interviewed and quoted about the war one comment stands out as being most succinct:

'The ill will created by our unilateral invasion and occupation of Iraq has shattered our ability to create a cooperative approach to stabilizing this region. Only a U.S. withdrawal from Iraq could win back the support of our allies and a few others for a joint approach to the region.

Once the invasion began in March 2003, all of the ensuing unhappy results became inevitable. The invasion of Iraq may well turn out to be the greatest strategic disaster in American history. In any event, the longer we stay, the worse it will be. Until that is understood, we will make no progress with our allies or in devising a promising alternative strategy.'

Yesterday the Congressional Budget Office brought fresh evidence of the nation's worsening fiscal picture and predictions of an economy that could slide into recession. The agency's latest estimate of total appropriations since 2001 to fight terrorism and for operations in Iraq and Afghanistan is $858 billion.

The war may no longer be front-page news but thousands of Americans are still fighting and dying there. The war is costing American taxpayers $10 billion a month--that is $10 billion that cannot be spent on health care, education and many other urgent priorities.

As we mourn the victims of 9/11 tomorrow, we should give some thought to those who have died since and those yet to die from a failure of American leadership after that trauma. Where will we be a year from now?


PS: I meant to mention how the election might get stolen again. They've caged 600k voters in Ohio already. Can you imagine being denied a ballot because you lost your house?


Randal Graves said...

Of course it can't happen a third time, that's just silly.

Keep it close enough to steal knowing full well the Dems will never fight tooth and nail for fear of being labeled sore losers.

Where will we be a year from now?

Still discussing how the hell enough Americans were dumb enough to have made it possible for Captain McAngry The POW to be president.

Anonymous said...

Still discussing how the hell enough Americans were dumb enough to have made it possible for Captain McAngry The POW to be president.

Or we could be "showing respect and deference" to President Palin as she heralds the End of Days.

DivaJood said...

How they've managed to terrorize a nation: allow the attacks of 9/11/01 to happen. Use it as a tool to bludgeon the people into submission. Lie about it. Accuse the dissenters of being unpatriotic. Hmmm. Sounds familiar.

Avshar said...

You know i hear all the time about the so called stolen elections. There is plenty of that activity on both sides so the democrats yelling about a stolen election just cracks me up. I am a democrat from California. You want to talk about stolen elections? Just live here during an election year and you will see plenty of democratic election theft. The laws that have been enacted in this state to allow illegal aliens to vote is just criminal. It may be benefiting my party but i do not agree with it one bit. So to say the republicans are the only ones to blame for this ridiculous state of affairs is stupid. Its just a sign of the times. Anything you do is ok as long as the ends justify the means right? WRONG!!!! Neither party has shown good sense in these elections and i am completely disgusted with the whole thing.
Now as to the wars. I don't think we should be there anymore either but we cannot just pull out completely overnight as wonderful as that sounds. We have to make sure the area remains stable after we leave. Its the government in both country's that are asking us to stay so its that much harder to leave them to their own devices. The problem is we wiped out all authority in Iraq and made no plans to replace it. Just massive stupidity. The main issue as everyone knows is keeping the area stable so our oil isn't 100 dollars a barrel. Well if the people of this country would just demand drilling for oil in our own territory to get away from the reliance of foreign oil and temper it with alternative sources that are not held back by the government but actually supported by it we would all be so much better off. That's my feeling on the matter.

susan said...

randal - How can I be both naive and cynical? Could it be something they put in the water out here or do I suffer MPD? ..and who's that Crow?

spartacus - See above and why is there no little arrow thingy on my keyboard?

divajood - Yes, sounds familiar. 100 years ago Americans were reading the little blue books but tv quashed education for most people.

Border Explorer said...

Susan, I'm just struck by your eloquence on this post. Thank you so much for expressing succinctly and coherently the ramifications of 9/11. I loved the quote! This was just wonderful.

susan said...

avshar - You describe yourself as a democrat from California where illegal aliens have been given the right to vote. I'm not especially knowledgeable about the local politics in your state but I have to say I find this statement very unlikely. However, even if true, it's a small problem that could easily be dealt with. What people are talking about with the general election process has more to do with real voters being removed from the voting lists as well as the fact that electronic voting machines were tampered with during the 2004 election particularly in Ohio but also in several other states (see for more info.

You went on to mention that US forces can't just leave Afganistan and Iraq. Why not? We shouldn't have invaded either country in the first place so the argument that things will be a mess if we leave is a fatuous one. Those countries are sovereign entities with very long histories and their fate belongs to them. Once the US announces its intention to leave (and I mean the 6 permanent bases and the Green Zone too) then the international community through the UN and the neighboring countries would be prepared to offer help if asked.

Finally, you mentioned oil prices and the fact that we should drill locally. It's an established fact that oil drilling operations offshore would take a decade to bring online. Not only would it be a very expensive process but there's no proof of huge quantities being available. Alaska's reserves are small compared to current usage.

All this information is easily available if you're interested in looking for more detail.

susan said...

be - Thanks so much for the compliment. You have a talent for eloquence and fascinating topics yourself :-)

I wish Odom could have stayed around to see the end of this thing but come to think of it not many of us here now will see that.

Seraphine said...

the united nations international monetary fund estimates the final tally from the mortgage crisis we're in might total one trillion dollars! add in the $800 billion from the war in iraq, and we're rapidly spending down whatever savings we had.
ohh wait. what savings? doh!

Ben said...

Oh God. I'm fairly secure about not being denied a ballot myself. But I do know a few right-wingers who will be happy to gloat about a GOP victory, no matter who gets more votes or how many states have to be rigged. Who needs legitimacy when you have power?

susan said...

sera - Yes, and goodness knows what will be left after the bailouts of Fannie, Freddie, Bear Stearns, Washington Mutual et al. We'll likely all be paying taxes direct to China.

ben - True but sad :-(

CDP said...

My husband is now a Democrat, but he rolls his eyes at me when I refer to stolen elections, especially 2000. He's very bright and he despises the Bush administration and the destruction they've wrought, but he just cannot bring himself to believe that such massive election fraud is possible in the United States. There are many people like him, and that's how they get away with it.

susan said...

cdp - I'm glad to hear your husband decided to change his political allegiance. It goes to show there's always hope.

My hope is that such an overwhelming majority of people will vote for the Democrats in this election that theft becomes a moot point.

Anonymous said...

Hello, Susan.
I feel absolutely terrible about all those people in those planes, and the hard-working immigrants that came to this country in order to make lives for themselves and their families.

As for the loudmouthed, bitchy, obnoxious, belligerent New Yorkers than this world was rid of on that day, ....
I'll keep my thoughts to myself.

Avshar said...

Wow, i can finally respond lol. I was having trouble with my account.

So anyway i never in anyway stated that your point with the housing thing wasn't a valid issue. It is. I was merely stating my disgust with the system on both sides and stated a case here in California which is actually happening everywhere but is especially bad here. And as to that, I don't see how you can't know about illegal voting. The info is readily available. Now bare with my lack of ability with links. I can only add the page locations.

and also here

Sorry i should send this to an email account to avoid this.

As to the oil you only refer to one aspect of what i was talking about. I know it will take time to bring alternate sources online. This is because for some reason this country has done nothing to improve its infrastructure in any meaningful way in the last 50 years. But if those oil deposits are so puny as to be useless then why is China drilling there now and Cuba and India so interested in doing so as well.

and here is another

Again sorry for the link issue.
This is proof enough of its use as a supply to me. But i was basically stating that we should drill domestically so we can lessen our need for their oil and then we wouldn't need to get involved with everything that goes on there. I also stated that it was to be done with government supported programs to find a viable alternative. You never bothered to take the whole statement together. You simply attacked the one aspect of my point.

As to the war. It has always been our policy to insure stability in the region do to the oil necessity and that is why we are there. Without our need for oil we wouldn't care a bit what happens there. I agree completely that we should never have invaded either country. Not really sure why we did other than as a political move to distance us from the u.n. I actually agree we should move away from the u.n. but that was truly a stupid way to go about it.

So there is my extremely late response lol. :)

susan said...

pt - Peace, brother :-)

Avshar - Essentially, it appears we feel the same way about a lot of this stuff and although I agree neither the Democrats or the Republicans has a lock on dodgy voting techniques it appears to me the Republicans have taken the dubious prize in the past two cycles. It scares me that anyone can get away with this stuff.

The country hasn't invested in any kind of infrastructure for 50 years. That's also true. It's probably time for a new New Deal but I'm not sure there'll be any money or credit left to pay for one. Even with the worst of the Depression the country still had resources, factories and a work ethic. Off shore drilling has been approved on both coasts so long as the rigs are at least 50 miles away from land. It sounds a very complex and expensive undertaking but now the oil companies, having made enormous profits, want more of the same. Along with automobile manufacturers, the oil industry has no interest in alternate means of transport or fuels.

It's always been true that if Iraq specialized in growing cabbages we would never have gone there. The same is true of Afganistan since that's where Unocal intended to place a pipeline so we could drain the oil from the other Stans that used to be part of Russia (and may be again).

I apologize if I sounded snappish in my last answer to you and in advance if this one seems to same but I'm not prepared to do long rebuttals to my original posts. There are lots of people who have much better known and well attended blogs who might be better able to talk at length with you.

I'm glad you enjoy 'phantsy' and I'll look forward to you having a blog of your own so you can direct its message.